And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write, ‘These things says the First and the Last, who was dead, and came to life: “I know your works, tribulation, and poverty (but you are rich); and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.
Do not fear any of those things which you are about to suffer. Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.” Revelation 2.8-11
I think Jesus meant it when He said, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
The storms of persecution are coming, and in some corners are already here. This doesn't count areas around the world where overt persecution has been going on for generations.
As this develops, many will apostatize and join the darkness. Many will turn in their brothers and sisters who sit next to them in pews. They are the ones who ignore or mock those who have already paid for refusing to sell out to the principalities and powers of this present darkness.
For those who don’t sell out, there is a beautiful promise. This, I think, will become a very important passage of Scripture for that remnant remaining faithful in the upcoming years. No doubt as important as it was for those under the Roman heel ages ago. A Holy Monday reflection